'RISE OF CHAMPIONS' FULFILLED IN GENSAN: Bornea topples 'Vulcan' to claim IBF Youth title
By Emmanuel B. Villaruel
Mon, 27 Feb 2017
GENERAL SANTOS CITY - With a championship belt strapped around his waist, Jade Bornea of Gensan's Sanman-Amoy Boxing Club relished every bit of his glorious moment.
And why not?
He's already a regional titleholder and soon-to-be world-rated in a prestigious boxing organization in only his seventh pro bout.
Bornea, only 21, barreled his way to a well-deserved unanimous victory over the very game Raul "Vulcan" Yu of Cebu's ALA Gym to clinch the IBF Youth super flyweight title in their bloody and brutal 10-round war that kept the huge crowd on their feet up to the very end of the "Laban Pinoy 3:Rise of Champions" late Sunday night at the Lagao gym here in the country's Tuna Capital.
After sizing up each other in the opening session, Bornea heated up the match by rocking Yu with crisp head shots towards the end of round two.
Gaining momentum and seeing a weak spot in his foe's defense, he continued to pepper Yu with solid hits to the head. Yu retaliated by pinning Bornea against the ropes but was rebuffed by the Sanman fighter's tight defense.
Yu stepped on the offensive plate in round four, landing solid combinations to the head that left Bornea with a cut over his left eye and a swollen face.
Following an uneventful fifth round, Bornea came back to life in round six where he again planted a series a punishing blows, mostly well-calculated hooks, to the head but Yu showed great resilience in the face of danger to weather the ordeal.
Bornea, however, seemed to have run out steam in round seven, giving Yu an opportunity to launch a daring counter-attack. It was Yu's best showing since round four.
Moments after Yu was warned for a low blow in round eight, an accidental clash of heads opened a gaping gash on Yu's right eyebrow that became Bornea's hot target for the remainder of the match.
Bornea cunningly worked on his foe's bloodied face in round nine but Yu did not back down. Instead, he gave Bornea one heck of a fight until the final bell to the delight of fans.
When the dust settled, it was Bornea who earned the judges' nod, with two of them scoring 97-93 and the third had it 98-92.
"I may have won but I take my hat off to Yu for giving me the toughest fight of my career. He's so tough and I really had a hard time against him. He taught me a lesson from this fight and made me realize that I still have a lot to improve on," said Bornea, who stretched his unbeaten streak to 7-0 laced with 4KOs.
Unknown to many, the Arakan, North Cotabato-native Bornea fought with an injured left knee he sustained during training.
"He did not have running in the course of his training because his knee is injured. We just let him bike and swim to strengthen his conditioning," said Sanman Promotions CEO Jim Claude 'JC' Manangquil, Bornea's promoter. "I'm happy he was able to pull it off."
Though on the losing end, the 22-year-old Yu (9-2-2, 8KOs) said he has nothing to be ashamed of knowing that he has given all his best.
"The blood that comes out of my cut really distracted me a lot.But I kept on fighting hard and did not show any signs of weakness because I really wanted to be a champion," said Yu, who once worked at a vulcanizing shop before finding his path to boxing.
"I'm still happy though even if I lost because I was able to give my best and put on a good show," added the pride of Buenavista, Agusan del Norte. "There's a time for everything. I will just work harder so I can come back even stronger."
In the supporting main event of the action-packed show presented by Sansam Promotions, Solar Sports and Gensan LGU as part of the 'Kalilangan' festival, Eden Sonsona flattened the hapless Jovanny Rota in 1:42 of the very first round with a barrage of telling head blows to snatch the WBF International super featherweight crown.
Eden's younger brother Lolito Sonsona caught part of the spotlight after holding on his ground on the way to a close unanimous decision victory over the durable Renren Tesorio that earned him the WBF Asia-Pacific super flyweight strap.
In the other featured match of the quadruple championship extravaganza, Ben Manangquil, stablemate of the Sonsonas at Sanman Boxing Club, prevailed by unanimous verdict over Glenn Porras in their explosive exchange of heavy blows all throughout their 10-round skirmish to bag the WBF International bantamweight title.
Click here to view a list of other articles written by Emmanuel B. Villaruel.
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